U. of Minn. lab swamped with avian influenza testing | U. of Wis. veterinary school reports canine influenza | Chicago-area veterinarian recommends dog park closure to stem canine influenza

April 10, 2015
Animal Health SmartBrief
News for animal health professionals

Veterinary Medicine Update
U. of Minn. lab swamped with avian influenza testing
Turkey flock.
(Matt Cardy/Getty Images)
Veterinarian Rob Porter with the University of Minnesota Veterinary Diagnostic Lab is responsible for calling poultry farmers to report positive avian influenza tests, news that he says is devastating to producers. Lab staff have been working overtime to process hundreds of samples they are testing for the disease. They use a PCR test to detect and amplify viral genetic material, and they expect to find additional positive results before the outbreak wanes. "I think we're still in the early process in terms of identifying these cases," Dr. Porter said. "I hope I'm wrong." Minnesota Public Radio (4/9), KARE-TV (Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn.) (4/9)
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U. of Wis. veterinary school reports canine influenza
The University of Wisconsin School of Veterinary Medicine reports canine influenza has surfaced in Madison, with one confirmed case. The disease is causing concern in the Chicago area, and UW veterinary experts warn that anyone traveling to Chicago with a dog should take precautions to avoid exposure. Veterinarians recommend a two-series canine influenza vaccine that begins protecting dogs after two weeks. The virus hasn't been shown to infect people or cats. WISC-TV (Madison, Wis.) (4/8)
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UC Davis veterinarians break the news: Tiny Tim the tortoise is a female
Tiny Tim is a desert tortoise who has been owned by a family since 1980. The owners gave the tortoise a male name, but University of California at Davis veterinarian David Guzman discovered the animal is female when running diagnostics that ultimately uncovered six heavily calcified, thick-shelled eggs. Tiny Tim passed some of the eggs with medical management, but the last three had to be surgically removed. The Davis Enterprise (Calif.)/UC Davis News (4/8), The Sacramento Bee (Calif.) (tiered subscription model) (4/8)
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Other News
What You Can Learn From Some of 2014's Top Innovators
Ready to get inspired for 2015? The experiences of these 6 innovative leaders can help you chart a smarter, more successful way forward with your business. Read the featured article.

Animal NewsSponsored By
Service dog helps girl keep breathing, thriving
Mr. Gibbs the service dog helps his young friend Alida breathe by carrying the oxygen tanks she needs to survive. Alida has neuroendocrine cell hyperplasia of infancy, a disease that affects the transfer of oxygen between her lungs and blood, making her dependent on heavy oxygen tanks. When she was a toddler, her father developed a system that would allow Mr. Gibbs to carry her oxygen so she would be free to be active like any other child. Alida's father says she is now attending kindergarten, ballet and other typical kid activities. USA Today (4/7)
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What animal lovers need to know about interacting with service dogs
Service dog
(Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
It may be tempting to approach service dogs, but it's important that people understand what's appropriate and what's not, says trainer Jessa Sterling. Dogs in training need to focus on their handlers, while fully trained dogs should not be distracted from their work or they might miss an important signal. Sterling recommends talking with the handler to ask about petting the dog or requesting that it be moved, and she urges people not to ask about the handler's disability, as that can be a source of stress. KPNX-TV (Phoenix) (4/8)
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Does having a foal affect a mare's disposition?
Veterinarian Nancy Diehl writes that having a foal may affect a mare's behavior, but other factors could also explain moodiness or other changes. It's best to have a veterinarian examine a mare whose behavior has changed to rule out reproductive system problems before pursuing other explanations, Dr. Diehl writes. The Horse (4/9)
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Photo-booth images of shelter pets boost adoptions
The Humane Society of Utah's Guinnevere Shuster decided to use photo-booth-style images of adoptable animals, and she seems to have hit on a big idea. The facility started posting the images to social media, and it's seen a high adoption rate among the featured animals. "We just wanted to help bring attention to some of our harder-to-adopt animals," Shuster said. "The pictures help show off their true personalities a bit more." NBC News (4/8)
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Around the Office
Pick the right legal structure to complement your business
Small businesses can choose from several legal structures when setting up shop, and each has advantages and disadvantages. Lawyers review the various features of S corporations, limited-liability companies, sole proprietorships and partnerships. The Charlotte Observer (N.C.) (4/8)
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Association News
AVMA seeks volunteers for antimicrobial use task force
Are you or someone you know interested in helping to define how best to collect and evaluate data on antimicrobial use in animal agriculture? The AVMA is searching for individuals to identify and evaluate methods for the collection of data on antimicrobial use in animal agriculture, provide scientific rationale, consider advantages and disadvantages for data collection and ascertain the potential role of the veterinary community. Nominations are due by Wednesday, April 15. Visit AVMA's Volunteer Opportunities Web page to learn more.
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Each man must look to himself to teach him the meaning of life. It is not something discovered; it is something molded."
-- Antoine de Saint-Exupery,
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The news summaries appearing in Animal Health SmartBrief are based on original information from news organizations and are produced by SmartBrief, Inc., an independent e-mail newsletter publisher. The AVMA is not responsible for the content of sites that are external to the AVMA. Linking to a website does not constitute an endorsement by the AVMA of the site or the information presented on the site. Questions and comments should be directed to SmartBrief at avma@smartbrief.com.
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